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Embrace the Cliche

Valentine’s Day is a day for love, surprising your loved ones and showing that affection with gifts. Despite how obnoxious you find flowers and chocolates to be, they are inescapable and you should probably just get over it. Flowers and chocolates are clichés because they are the perfect gifts.  They are relatively inexpensive, readily available, pretty and almost EVERYONE likes them (except for cynical a*sholes).

Christmas is the grand daddy of the holiday family and the most pimped out. But it’s established enough to handle it. No matter how crazy the shopping season gets or how closely to Halloween shops start pumping Jingle Bells, Christmas still has its own traditions. It is a far-reaching family holiday. Valentine’s is intimate and vulnerable. Taking advantage of Valentine’s is like kicking a puppy.

The biggest ‘fail’ I have seen so far was a billboard for cool sculpting, a non-surgical aesthetic procedure. (If you buy the cosmetic package for your sweetheart you deserve the inevitable smack to the face.) I understand marketing and advertizing firms try to capitalize on holiday fervor, but, yeah, they shouldn’t have touched that one.

The commercialization of some holidays is completely unsuccessful. For example, I don’t have a compulsion to buy new furniture on President’s Day. However, I have strong affection for the iconic red roses and box of candy, even if it has been years since the husband and I exchanged tokens. We still have memories of those early days: The excitement of new love, the joy of just having someone to spend the holiday with and the anticipation of Valentine’s Day.

For jaded Hallmark-conspiracy theorists out there, you are probably right, but I still don’t care. If you don’t want to buy into a cliché, you better get creative. Foot rubs, home-cooked dinners, and all-inclusive vacations are accepted expressions of True Love.

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